History of GamerGate

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While the Zoe Quinn Scandal ultimately led up to #GamerGate, #GamerGate is a consumer revolt/movement that began in late August after concerns over journalistic integrity was met with the claim that "Gamers are Dead". An argument that is made is that #GameGate as we know it would never have gotten to its current point if conversation about the Zoe Quinn Scandal was not met with bannings from websites and deletions of comments.

For full history of #GamerGate, see Timeline.

August 2014

16 August
  • Eron Gjoni Publishes "thezoepost", explaining the relationship between Zoe Quinn and himself, and her supposed infidelity with at least five different individuals. Of the five, three are actually named. They include Nathan Grayson, a gaming journalist associated with Kotaku and RockPaperShotgun, and her employer Joshua Boggs. "thezoepost" also chronicles chat logs between Eron and Zoe, claims of emotional manipulation by Zoe against Eron, and attempts at lying by Zoe.
17 August
  • Youtuber MundaneMatt uploaded a video in which he discusses "thezoepost". This video was taken down and hit with a DMCA copyright claim made by Zoe Quinn, on the grounds that the video used images from her game Depression Quest. Youtuber InternetAristocrat uploaded his own video discussing thezoepost soon after, and titled it "The Five Guys Saga"
19 August
  • Youtube game reviewer and critic TotalBiscuit published a Twitlonger post criticizing the use of DMCA requests to censor critical works. His post was then submitted to the /r/gaming subreddit, and thousands of people began to discus the post and its intended message in the context of Zoe Quinn taking down MundaneMatt's video. More than 25,000 comments were deleted by the moderators of the subreddit, and a large amount of users were shadowbanned.
21 August
  • The Fine Young Capitalists published an interview describing how Zoe Quinn shut down their website, citing issues with their policies concerning transwomen. 4chan's /pol/ (Political) and /v/ (Video Games) then decided to help fund TFYC via IndieGoGo, raising over $23,000 over the next few days for TFYC. On the same day, InternetAristocrat released another video about the ongoing Zoe Quinn scandal, titled "Quinnspiracy Theory: In-n-Out Edition".
24 August
  • The IndieGoGo page for TFYC was hacked and changed to make it appear as if the campaign was shut down. TFYC were able to restore the page and no money was lost because of the attack.
26 August
  • Kotaku editor Stephen Totilo announced that writers affiliated with Kotaku would be prohibited from contributing to the Patreons of video game developers. Polygon made a similar announcement, allowing their writers to contribute to the Patreons of developers, but requiring that they disclose their contributions when writing about anything related to the developer or their work. Critics quickly pointed out that this policy fails to follow the standards set by the Society for Professional Journalists, which explicitly states that journalists must "remain free of associations and activities that may compromise integrity or damage credibility".
27 August
28 August
  • Nine "Gamers are Dead" articles are published by separate gaming journalism outlets, with five additional websites publishing articles deriding "misogynistic" gamers for harassment. The fact that all nine articles were published within 24 hours of each other caused many gamers to grow suspicious that several gaming journalism outlets were colluding with each other and attempting to push a singular narrative.

September 2014

1 September
15 September
  • Julian Assange of WikiLeaks has an AMA on reddit's /r/technology subreddit.[4] User "ShaskaOtselot" asks for Julian's opinion on reddit's censorship of GamerGate,[5] and it is revealed that ShaskaOtselot has been shadowbanned by the admins. Initial speculation led people to believe ShaskaOtselot was banned for asking a question about GamerGate,[6] but further digging concluded they were banned prior to the AMA.[7] However, some users speculate that ShaskaOtselot was shadowbanned for GamerGate-related reasons.[7] It is not known if there has been any confirmation from the admins.
16 September
  • The American Enterprise Institute uploads a YouTube video as part of Christina Hoff Sommers' Factual Feminist series, titled "Are video games sexist?".[8]
17 September
  • Milo Yiannopoulos of Breitbart publishes an article exposing the "GameJournoPros" Google Groups list and emails.[9]

October 2014

17 October
  • Gawker removes its page of partners after Operation Disrespectful Nod succeeds in getting some advertisers to pull ads or denounce that they had active ads on Gawker.
18 October
  • Emails from the GameJournoPros list reveal that the firing and subsequent blacklisting of Allistar Pinsof, a former writer for Destructoid, was the result of collusion between Destructoid owner Yanier "Niero" Gonzalez, Destructoid editor-in-chief Dale North, and other GameJournoPro members.[10] Gonzalez responded by denying any collusion was involved in the firing of Pinsof.[11]
22 October
  • Max Read of Gawker publishes an article claiming GamerGate (through Operation Disrespectful Nod) caused Gawker to lose "[…] thousands of dollars already, and could potentially lose thousands more, if not millions".[12][13][14]
27 October
  • The American Enterprise Institute uploads a YouTube video as part of Christina Hoff Sommers' Factual Feminist series, titled "What critics of GamerGate get wrong".[15]

See also

References

  1. Adam Baldwin on Twitter: #GamerGate
  2. (archive) TweetSave: Adam Baldwin on Twitter: #GamerGate
  3. (archive) Rock Paper Shotgun: The Monday Papers; By Graham Smith on September 1st, 2014
  4. reddit: I am Julian Assange. AMA about my new book, "When Google Met WikiLeaks."
  5. reddit: comment by ShaskaOtselot
  6. reddit: comment by doodep
  7. 7.0 7.1 reddit: comment by lukeyq
  8. YouTube: American Enterprise Institute - Are video games sexist?
  9. Breitbart: "Exposed: The Secret Mailing List of the Gaming Journalism Elite by Milo Yiannopoulos
  10. BlogJob: "#GamerGate: Destructoid, Corruption and Ruined Careers" by William Usher
  11. BlogJob: "#GamerGate: 'Nowhere On My Site Does It Say We Are Journalists' Says Destructoid Owner" by William Usher
  12. (archive) "How We Got Rolled by the Dishonest Fascists of Gamergate" by Max Read
  13. Columbia Journalism Review: "Gawker: The internet bully" by Sarah Grieco
  14. Breitbart: "Gawker: 'Dishonest Fascists' of GamerGate Could Cost Us 'Millions'" by Milo Yiannopoulos
  15. YouTube: American Enterprise Institute - What critics of GamerGate get wrong